New Delhi [India], October 9 (ANI): Agri export activities pick up in the Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh due to contributions of the Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
According to an official release by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry on Friday, APEDA took several initiatives to sensitise growers, exporters, state government officials and other stakeholders on the export potential of agricultural products and requirements under the National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP) for exports as the export of agricultural products of the regions has picked up.
With the support of APEDA, which is a statutory body under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir exported Geographical Indications (GI) certified product Kashmir Saffron from Srinagar to Dubai and other Middle Eastern markets during March-April 2021.
"A few months after the offices of APEDA got functional in Jammu and Srinagar in February 2021, a shipment of Mishri variety Kashmir Valley Cherries was carried out from Srinagar to Dubai for the first time followed by commercial shipments creating an international market for Indian Cherries during the month of June-July 2021 followed by repeat orders for Indian Cherries. The shipment was handled by local entrepreneurs from Kashmir Valley with the established exporter from Mumbai to their counterpart in Dubai," read the release.
In another major boost to export activities in the Valley, shipments of Kashmir Valley fragrance rice Mushkbudji and Acacia honey have been planned and samples have already been sent during August 2021 by the Kashmir Valley startups/new entrepreneurs to Lulu Group FMCG Dubai, Oman and other Middle Eastern markets. Further, samples of Kashmir Valley Apples have also been planned during September 2021 to Oman, Qatar, Dubai and other Middle Eastern markets for shipment.
The Ministry of Commerce & Industry release informed that it is expected that regular supplies will take place from Kashmir Valley to the Middle Eastern and other international markets once the export value chain by road followed by sea container is established.
With the help of APEDA, shipment of Ladakh Apricots was carried out from Leh to Dubai for the first time followed by commercial shipments of Ladakh Halman Apricot during the month of August-September 2021. The shipment was handled by local entrepreneurs from Kargil with the established exporter from Mumbai to their counterpart in Dubai.
"Product samples of Seabuckthorn such as juice, pulp, concentrate, oil and herbal fusion tea have been obtained and provided during September 2021 to Indian corporate food producers for the development of products for domestic as well as overseas markets. The product development may take some time to launch in the international food market," read the release.
APEDA has also carried out sensitization of officials of Seed Certification, Directorate of Agriculture, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry, Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SKUAST) of Srinagar and Jammu Regions for their convergence into Organic Certification Agency under NPOP during July 2021. It also signed MoUs with Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology and Jammu & Kashmir Trade Promotion Organisation (JKTPO) for technical support and promotional activities for enhancing productivity and promotion of potential products from the region.
Considering the potential and forthcoming need of export infrastructure for the region, the APEDA took up the issue of comprehensive export logistics requirements for UT of Jammu and Kashmir with the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Central Warehousing Corporation, and other concerned departments during July 2021 for the creation of Customs Clearance Facility, smooth X-ray and handling for perishable commodities and issuance of Phytosanitary Certificate facility at Jammu, Srinagar and Leh airports.
APEDA has also developed and provided a draft Agri Export Plan for Jammu and Kashmir for both the regions of Kashmir valley and the Jammu division and identified potential products for exports such as Apple, Cherry, Walnut, Honey, Saffron, Rice, Gucchi.
Ladakh is in process of developing an Agri export plan covering identified potential products for exports such as Seabuckthorn, Apricots and certified organic products after the draft Agri Export Plan was prepared by APEDA during July 2021, read the release. (ANI)